Sri Lanka applied the fuel distribution system according to the norm during the economic crisis, causing the island nation to run out of gasoline.
The state-run Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC), which accounts for two-thirds of the fuel retail market in Sri Lanka, announced on April 15 it would limit the amount of fuel drivers can buy and ban injecting it. can to prevent hoarding of cars or diesel after the South Asian country decided to distribute the rations according to quotas.
CPC said that the maximum amount of gasoline sold to motorbike owners is 4 liters, and three-wheelers are 5 liters. Owners of personal cars and trucks are allowed to buy up to 19.5 liters of petrol or diesel.
Sri Lankan Energy Ministry officials expect the fuel retailer, which has a third of the market share, Lanka IOC, a subsidiary of the Indian Petroleum Corporation, to adopt a quota-based distribution policy.
Most gas stations in Sri Lanka have run out of stock, people wait in long lines to buy fuel at operating facilities. Since March, at least eight Sri Lankans have died waiting in line to buy fuel.
Litro Gas, Sri Lanka’s main gas supplier, announced that it is out of stock but hopes to have a new supply on April 18 to resume distribution.
Sri Lanka on April 12 declared a default on its debt after grappling with its worst recession since independence, leaving the government with no foreign currency to import essential goods. The worst economic crisis since Sri Lanka gained independence in 1948 caused a severe shortage of essential goods and caused widespread power outages.
Sri Lanka signed many foreign loan agreements, of which China is the largest creditor, followed by India and Japan, to invest in infrastructure. However, weak financial management policies and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic have flooded Sri Lanka with a “mountain of debt”.
International credit rating agencies downgraded Sri Lanka’s credit rating last year, making it almost impossible for the country to access foreign capital markets to borrow more money to cover the cost of importing goods. Sri Lanka has to import most products, from milk powder, rice, gasoline to pharmaceuticals and cement.
Tens of thousands of people protested outside President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s office and demanded his resignation. The Sri Lankan government has called on expatriates to donate money to help buy food and fuel, and announced it will negotiate with the World Monetary Fund (IMF) on a bailout package.
Nguyen Tien (According to AFP)